Kane retires; Heinzer promoted

Liz Kane, 70, retired Dec. 13 after 11 years as the Mountain Democrat’s fourth sports editor. Working with Kane for the past 11 years is sports writer Jerry Heinzer, who takes over as sports editor Dec. 14, announced Editor Michael Raffety. Liz Kane began as a sports correspondent in January 1994 and five years later was […]

New courthouse on track despite cutbacks

SAN FRANCISCO — The Judicial Council Dec. 12 endorsed several cost-cutting measures for court construction while affirming its commitment to much-needed improvements in the judicial branch’s statewide infrastructure. The council approved recommendations from the Court Facilities Working Group to cancel two construction projects in small counties and to seek cost-savings on others. The two dropped […]

EID board adjusts Conflict of Interest Code reflecting smaller management ranks

The El Dorado Irrigation District board approved revisions of the district’s conflict of interest code to reflect the significant downsizing of district personnel in the last three years, particularly among management and supervisory level employees, and to expand the scope of economic interests that the board and top management are required to disclose. EID maintains a conflict […]

Waste Connections headquarters moving to Texas

Waste Connections, the company that provides solid waste collection, transfer, disposal and recycling services for El Dorado County and over 2 million customers across the country, announced on Monday the move of their company headquarters from Folsom to the Woodlands, Texas. The relocation was spurred due to the company’s distaste with the current business climate […]

December 14, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 4 Replies

Bill George given gavel at EID

At its Dec. 12 meeting, the El Dorado Irrigation District Board of Directors selected Bill George as president and George Osborne as vice president for 2012. The new officers began their duties immediately. Alan Day, newly elected board member from El Dorado Hills representing Division 5, also began his term at the meeting. Director Day received welcome messages from his […]

December 14, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Be a weekly winner at Snowline stores

DON’T ASK ME:
 Johnny “Appleseed” Chapman provided the following T-shirt statement: “If you need anything. . . don’t hesitate to ask somebody else.” • • • WIN A GIFT CARD:
 From now until Jan 5, you can enter to win a $25 gift card at the Snowline Hospice Thrift Stores. There will be weekly winners at each […]

Guinn pleads to manslaughter

The driver who was responsible for a car wreck that killed an El Dorado High School student earlier this year accepted a plea deal Monday morning. Victoria Elizabeth Guinn, 19, was behind the wheel of a Nissan 350z on March 27 when she lost control of the vehicle and crashed into oak trees along Newtown […]

December 14, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged

Women’s Fund to sponsor forum

The Women’s Fund El Dorado invites the public to attend a community needs forum 6 .m. Jan. 19, 2012, at the Cameron Park Community Services District auditorium.  The purpose of the forum is to update the entire community on the most current needs of local programs and projects, especially in the nonprofit arena, in order […]

Don’t drink and drive: No holiday festivities in jail

As you celebrate the holiday season enjoying traditions, food, family and fun, be reminded that South Lake Tahoe police, Placerville police, El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office and the California Highway Patrol will be out in force from Dec. 16, to Jan. 2 to arrest anyone caught driving drunk behind the wheel. “RUOK?” is the text […]

December 14, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 5 Replies

Forest Service seeks volunteers for 2012 Ski with a Ranger program

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — The U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit is looking for ski and snowboard volunteers to lead guided interpretive tours at Heavenly Mountain Ski Resort one day a week from January through April 2012. These interpretive tours are intended to educate resort visitors about the natural and cultural history of […]

Grace Foundation volunteers help heal wounds

EL DORADO HILLS — On a gusty and bright fall afternoon on the Grace Foundation ranch dozens of volunteers feed, socialize and exercise horses, many of which suffered starvation and abuse at Whispering Pines Ranch in Susanville. Intel Project Manager Jean Acosta works with her “project horse,” a spirited and affectionate 2-year-old gelding mustang named […]

Greenberg’s wife: ‘Please don’t hurt me’

Barrie Greenberg feared for her life. She had just watched her estranged husband shoot her boyfriend three times, including a point-blank shot to the head. She thought she was next. “I dropped on the ground and I covered myself and I was screaming, ‘Please don’t hurt me, please don’t hurt me,’” she recalled during her emotionally […]

Details emerge in abused horses case

EL DORADO HILLS — Recent developments in the Grace Foundation’s rescue of 56 abused and starving horses from the derelict Whispering Pines Ranch in Susanville, Lassen County, include evidence that ranch owner Dwight Bennett was also a foster parent to at least one child while the rotting carcasses of 28 horses and three dogs lay […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Skeel fired

EL DORADO HILLS — On Friday morning embattled El Dorado Hills Community Services District General Manager John Skeel tried to describe his reaction to the news that he’d been fired the night before. “I was stunned … it’s still sinking in … I wasn’t expecting this … I’m very disappointed.” Following the public portion of […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 3 Replies

Teens, Internet bring cat home to owner

How do you keep the cat down on the farm once she’s seen Placerville? “Baby,”a 7-year-old charcoal gray cat with bright green eyes, has seen the elephant and now, after five long weeks, she’s home in Pollock Pines as the result of technology and an enterprising couple of teens. On Oct. 25, Rebecca Emerick, 61, […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Folsom Lake College president announces retirement

Folsom Lake College President Dr. Thelma Scott-Skillman – the college’s founding president – has announced she plans to retire from her position effective June 30, 2012. Scott-Skillman was appointed president of Folsom Lake College July 1, 2001, after a national search. She previously served in progressively responsible positions in four colleges and the California Community […]

State to leave narcotics task force

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — Local law enforcement officials hope to maintain a more than two decades old drug task force at the South Shore following the elimination of state funding this summer. The South Lake El Dorado Narcotics Enforcement Team will lose its task force commander position following the withdrawal of general fund money from the […]

Heard over the back fence: Free Santa pictures at Snowline’s El Dorado Rd. store

CHANGE IS GOOD?
 Thanks to John Chapman, the following T-shirt statement is offered: “I WELCOME CHANGE as long as nothing is altered or different.” • • • SANTA IS ON THE WAY:
 We received late information that Santa will be at the Snowline Hospice Thrift Store, located just off Highway 50 on El Dorado Road, Placerville. Santa […]

Governor directs administration to cut costs

SACRAMENTO – Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. last week issued an Executive Order directing the California Department of Finance to incorporate common-sense program-evaluation methods into the budgeting process, in order to fund programs based on their necessity and effectiveness. The order’s goal is to cut costs and increase efficiency in this and future state budgets. […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 3 Replies

Dumont’s sister testifies

Renee Romanko heard three gunshots. Seconds later, she came face-to-face with Morris Greenberg. “He said, ‘Your (expletive) brother is dead,’” Romanko tearfully told jurors Tuesday. Greenberg, 40, is accused of gunning down 26-year-old Anthony Dumont on July 20, 2008. Earlier that morning, Dumont, Romanko and her husband met at Greenberg’s foreclosed Somerset home to help Dumont’s girlfriend […]

December 12, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Cal Fire offers disaster planning tips

“This most recent wind event which caused more than a dozen fires in both Amador and El Dorado counties found many people without power for three or more days. Those who were prepared did well but those who did not prepare had a far more difficult time,” said  Unit Chief Kelly Keenan of the Amador-El Dorado Unit of […]

December 30, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Cargo not for canines

Last month 56-year-old Lynn Jones of Nevada was fired for refusing to load an emaciated dog into a plane’s cargo area. This week Airport Terminal Services President Sally Leible offered the big-hearted baggage handler her job back, along with back pay and an apology. She told the Associated Press that Jones “was trying to protect […]

The Christmas parade was magical

The annual Hangtown Christmas Parade on Sunday, Dec. 4, was full of magical moments. Many entries took a cue from the theme “Believe in the Magic” and featured magicians, top hats and doves flying out of a giant top hat. The magic extended to the weather with a clear, sunny day providing a perfect backdrop […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Area veterans honor 70th Pearl Harbor Day

At 9:55 Wednesday morning, veterans in El Dorado County opened a ceremony in memory of “all the military and civilian personnel serving on the Island of Oahu on 7 December, 1941.” Nearly 100 veterans and family members gathered at the Veterans Memorial Building on Placerville Drive to pay their respects to those who perished and […]

Rubicon Trail improvements draft EIS ready

A draft environmental impact statement that analyzes Rubicon Trail resource improvements and issuing an easement to El Dorado County for the operation and maintenance of the road was made available for public review and comment early in December. Copies of the draft EIS are available on the Eldorado National Forest Website at fs.fed.us/r5/eldorado and by contacting the Eldorado […]

Fire razes Green St. home

Two loud explosions were heard by neighbors who came out of their homes to see a house at 874 Green St. in Placerville fully engulfed in flames Wednesday afternoon. A 26-year-old woman who was at the home alone with the family’s two dogs managed to escape with the pets, one of which wandered lost and […]

Cal Dept. of Mental Health to change to hospital dept.

SACRAMENTO – California Department of Mental Health (DMH) announced Dec. 7 its blueprint to establish the new Department of State Hospitals (DSH) and reforms to the DMH structure designed to improve the mental hospital system in California. “We are making the changes that are long overdue,” said DMH Acting Director, Cliff Allenby. “Earlier this year, […]

School honors Keegan’s memory

EL DORADO HILLS — Keegan Swinney loved scary movie night with his family, was always eager for a snack at school (even gluten-free crackers) and had an infectious smile. These memories and so much more were shared at the memorial service held for the 10-year-old Tuesday afternoon at Silva Valley Elementary in El Dorado Hills. […]

Defense: Dumont slaying in self-defense

In the opening statements of Morris Greenberg’s murder trial this week, attorneys in the case agreed on one fact: Anthony Dumont was shot and killed by the retired Burlingame police officer. Dumont, 26, was killed on July 20, 2008, while helping his girlfriend — Greenberg’s estranged wife — move out of Greenberg’s foreclosed home on […]

Burglary suspects arrested in armed incident

Two burglary suspects were arrested Tuesday evening in an incident that involved residents in the North Shingle Road area reporting a man armed with a rifle terrorizing the neighborhood. El Dorado County Sheriff’s Central Dispatch received a call of a robbery that just occurred shortly before 4 p.m. in the Sleepy Hollow residential area. A […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 9 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Yes, you can drive through Bethlehem

T-SHIRT WARNING:
 John Chapman dropped off the following “Stay away from this person” T-shirt statement: “Even if the voices in my head aren’t real . . They have some great ideas!” • • • DRIVING THROUGH BETHLEHEM:
 Tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday, the Pollock Pines Community Church,
6361 Pony Express Trail, Pollock Pines, is presenting the drive-through presentation of […]

Poor Red’s raided; later reopened

Poor Red’s Bar-B-Q restaurant in El Dorado was closed Tuesday for “unexpected maintenance,” according to a hand-written note taped to the door. Agents and officers of the California Highway Patrol and the State Board of Equalization were conducting operations inside the building but would not comment on what or for whom they were looking. The […]

December 09, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 20 Replies

Amber Alert canceled; kids found safe

A statewide Amber Alert was called off Monday night after El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies found three missing West Sacramento children safe. Dmitriy Gerasimov, 30, is accused of taking three of his children — ages 7, 4 and 2 — from their West Sacramento home on Saturday night after a reported domestic dispute with his […]

Blankets for homeless sought

A 13-year-old Placerville Girl Scout is heading an effort to collect blankets for local homeless people, with the collection occurring from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Wal-Mart on Missouri Flat Road in Placerville. Kayla Grissom, working on her silver award with Girl Scout Troop 1740 of Placerville, writes in a flier […]

Convicted torturer Hamlin denied parole

The El Dorado Hills attorney who terrorized his wife and children will spend at least 10 more years behind bars. The California Board of Parole Hearings denied parole for Richard Hamlin, who is currently serving his sentence at Pleasant Valley State Prison in Coalinga. Richard’s ex-wife Susan and their four children strongly opposed his parole. In […]

Greenberg trial delayed: Judge ill

Opening statements in the first-degree murder trial of Morris Greenberg were set to be delivered Tuesday morning. But after three years and numerous delays, friends and family members of the man allegedly gunned down by Greenberg were forced to wait one more day. Greenberg, 40, is accused of fatally shooting 26-year-old Anthony Dumont in 2008. […]

Council members’ ‘neighborhood chats’ bring fresh ideas

What do you like about Placerville? What don’t you like about it? Those were two of the six questions designed to spark discussion at two community gatherings sponsored by the city of Placerville. At Tuesday’s gathering at Town Hall in Placerville, about 50 people showed up to talk with City Council members and city staff […]

Spitting shopper sent to slammer

A man accused of harassing shoppers and spitting on a Placerville police officer remains in jail on more than $1 million bail. On the evening of Nov. 29 Placerville police officers responded to Placerville’s Creek View Mini Mart on Broadway after receiving reports that an agitated, shoeless man was accosting store patrons, said Placerville Police […]

December 07, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 2 Replies

Heard over the back fence: Saturday holiday dinner in El Dorado

MARRIAGE INTERMISSION:
 On Thanksgiving Day John Chapman gave me the following T-shirt statement: “We interrupt this marriage to bring you Football Season.” You guessed it — we were watching football. • • • EL DORADO CHRISTMAS DINNER: 
El Dorado Community Hall is having its annual Christmas dinner on Saturday, Dec. 10. Social hour starts at 5:30 p.m., […]

Dead body found by burned house

GEORGETOWN — An unidentified man was found dead outside of a burned dwelling in Georgetown, authorities said. On the afternoon of Nov. 29, the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department was contacted regarding a reported death at a residential structure fire at 1925 Mameluke Hill Road in Georgetown. Sheriff’s Lt. Bryan Golmitz said a neighbor noticed […]

December 07, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

PG&E’s Winter Gas Savings program launched

PG&E announced the launch of its annual Winter Gas Savings program, which gives eligible residential and business customers an automatic bill credit when they reduce their natural gas usage over the next two months compared to the previous three winters. Last winter, some 2.7 million customers earned bill credits totaling $70 million. Customers who conserve […]

December 19, 2011 | Posted in News | Tagged | 1 Reply

Many forest roads, trails closed due to downed trees

Many roads and trails throughout the Eldorado National Forest are blocked by trees last week’s winds blew over. U.S. Forest Service personnel and visitors are reporting that many roads and trails within the Eldorado National Forest are not passable due to trees that fell during the recent high winds. As a result, travelers may find […]

Wind-whipped fires contained

CAMINO –  All the fires that began during last Wednesday’s “wind event” have been contained and controlled but Cal Fire was closely watching a severe wind storm that had been predicted for Tuesday, Dec. 6. “We have prepositioned additional Cal Fire equipment (10 fire engines and four Type 1 handcrews from across the state) in strategic […]

Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Between neighbors

I have a neighbor who has a chocolate Lab. Twice now, their dog has evaded their electric fence and come at me from 20 to 30 yards. Both times I was about to go on a run.  I love dogs and have had dogs all my life, but this one charges toward me while baring […]

Drunken argument leads to shooting

A Mosquito man was taken to an area hospital Saturday after being shot during a drunken argument, authorities said. El Dorado County sheriff’s deputies responded to a reported shooting on the 2100 block of Rex Court in Mosquito at 6:20 p.m. Saturday. Upon arriving at the scene, deputies found two men suffering from various injuries. […]